"If you don't see the real me, you won't see what love has won..." Vota

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Self Esteem = self worship

I have no self-esteem. Don't feel sorry for me. This is a GOOD thing. I once had enormous self esteem. I knew I was attractive, smart, popular, following all the right rules, a "good Christian", I also was a snob in high school. Not that I snubbed the people you would think. I thought I was better than all of the kids who were disobedient, doing drugs, drinking-- the "in crowd"... then I found myself in the bottom of the barrel. This is exactly where I needed to be.

Last night at church, David posed a question for us to sit and talk about. He asked us what the importance of a moment of repentance is to a persons life. This question is posed during our discussion of the parable of The Lost Son. At first, superficially, the question seems as if it should be answered "well, one should repent frequently." This is not the type of repentance David is talking about. He is talking about the younger son, who finds himself in the bottom of the barrel and realizes his need for the farther. So in essence, he asked us how important is it in ones spiritual walk to reach the bottom of the barrel? To this question, I say it is essential. Jesus came to seek and find the lost. If you are not lost (well everyone is, but some just don't realize it) or have never reached the bottom of the barrel... David pointed out in the parable of the Lost Sheep, that Jesus was telling the Pharisees that He trusted them (the 99 sheep) to stay put while he went out to seek the 1 lost sheep. They were not "lost". However, they had their own problems. They may not have been lost as in they did not know where they were, but they instead refused to follow their shepherd... anyway back to the barrel... If a person has never reached the bottom of the barrel, then how can they fully understand their need for a savior? Reaching the bottom, or brokenness, doesn't have to be being in a literal pit of despair (that's where I found myself), but in a state where one realizes they are nothing without the Father. I say, brokenness is a key to salvation. Once again, if you are not broken then you do not need to be fixed, or as Jesus put it, if someone is not sick, they do not need a doctor. In light of what Paul says about us all having sinned and fallen short of God's glory, those people who do not need fixing... hmmmm, I wonder what they think about themselves. That they are not sinners? The Pharisees thought this.

Now back to the self-esteem... self-esteem means self-worship. Do you esteem yourself? The Pharisees did. I used to. Now as I teach my girls I want to teach them not to look in the mirror and think about all the good things about themselves, but to look in the mirror and think, "what can I do good for someone else today?" Now in doing this I am not putting them down or bringing their spirits to self-disgust, but instead I am teaching under the belief that all (even those who are disgusted with themselves) have an inborn sense of self-worship. This is why Jesus told us to love our neighbor as ourselves. He knew we had a natural self love. So now, the esteem I want to have is Jesus-esteem. I want to teach my children to esteem Jesus and not themselves.


  1. No, it is not a good thing to have no self-esteem. Self-esteem is not a synonym for self-worship. The word conceit (attractive, smart, popular) may be a better word for self-worship. Self-esteem can be better defined as belief in oneself; self-respect; confidence in oneself.

    Why would Jesus say in Matt. 22.39 ". . .you shall love your neighbor as yourself." Without self-rspect, belief in oneself, or self confidence, how can we be of any help to our neighbor. I Corinthians 13, the great chapter on love, gives us an insight into love and how we are to treat those with whom we come in contact. We have to be a loveable person to love.

  2. es⋅teem  /ɪˈstim/ Show Spelled [ih-steem] Show IPA
    Use esteem in a Sentence
    See web results for esteem
    See images of esteem
    –verb (used with object)
    1.to regard highly or favorably; regard with respect or admiration: I esteem him for his honesty.
    2.to consider as of a certain value or of a certain type; regard: I esteem it worthless.
    3.Obsolete. to set a value on; appraise.
    4.favorable opinion or judgment; respect or regard: to hold a person in esteem.
    5.Archaic. opinion or judgment; estimation; valuation.

    I would rather place my high "esteem" on Jesus. I know my worth and value and it is only because of Him, not because of anything I have ever done or will ever do.

  3. You give the definition of esteem. You were talking about self-esteem in the above writing. Again, there is great value in a healthy self-esteem.

    Our children need self-esteem. They need to know that when they do well, we approve and praise them.

    We have better interpersonal relationships when we ourselves have self-esteem. Again, we must love ourselves to love others.

    One can esteem Jesus and still have self-esteem.

  4. Here is the thing, I teach my children through positive reinforcement (when they do well, I tell them.) They naturally will develope self love, therefor I do not teach "self-esteem" as a course-- as is the new age approach. I do teach them in lessons that Jesus makes us worthy of Heaven and only Jesus. I teach them what is known as "Uncommon Courtesy". This is actually the title of the text book I use. It teaches to put others first.

  5. Romans 12:3For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.

  6. Thinking more highly of oneself than one ought is conceit (I'm beautiful, I'm popular, etc.) Self-esteem is not conceit.

    "Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be a propitiation for our sins". 1 John 4:10.

    Can anyone bask in that sort of love and not feel a sense of surpassive value?

    Yes, we can have self-esteem and still have Christian values. "Love thy neighbor as thyself"

  7. Anon, I think we are saying the same thing, just in different words. I think due to absence of actual face to face explanation my tone, emphasis... is missed. (This is the danger in writing I suppose instead of true communication.) I am saying that through Jesus we have great value; without Jesus our self value (self-esteem) is worthless or just self-worship or as you say "conceit". I will teach and have taught my children this.

    I had great self-esteem as a young lady, but my respect for myself was because of things I did. Now have have so much pride in my value that I want others to experience what true value is! My pride in my value is really Boasting in Jesus. I am proud that I am worth His blood-- the price He paid for me. I am NOTHING, I repeat, NOTHING without Him.


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